The Future of the Affordable Care Act under President Trump: Stakeholders Respond to Proposed 2019 Marketplace Rule. Part I: Insurers

The Trump Administration has proposed a number of changes to the Affordable Care Act’s essential health benefit standard, marketplace operations, and other consumer protections. In this first in a series of blog posts analyzing public comments on the proposed rules, CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette finds that insurance industry responses were not always what you’d expect. Continue reading

New Rules Pending on Short-Term Health Plans: Impacts for Consumers, Markets and Potential State Responses

New rules are due any day now in response to President Trump’s October 13, 2017 executive order to expand access to short-term limited-duration health plans that don’t have to comply with Affordable Care Act protections. The impact of the proposed new rules were debated at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ December meeting, as well as potential state policy options to protect consumers and stabilize their markets. CHIR recently outlined some in an issue brief, and we share some highlights here. Continue reading

Shopping Tips for 2018 Open Enrollment

What’s a marketplace consumer to think in this crazy-mixed up year for the Affordable Care Act? Federal policy uncertainty has led to some downright weird and counterintuitive premiums for marketplace plans. And smart shoppers can find some incredible deals. CHIR’s Sandy Ahn shares her shopping tips for this year’s open enrollment season. Continue reading

Insurers, State Regulators Avoid Bare Counties in 2018, but Seek Long-Term Solutions

As we near the end of the second week of a so-far successful Open Enrollment, uncertainty over the future of the Affordable Care Act remains a challenge. As insurers and state regulators prepared for the 2018 plan year, they addressed questions of whether Congress or the Trump Administration would make major changes to the law. This led to a situation in several states where some or all counties seemed likely to have no insurance plan available for residents seeking marketplace coverage. In a new issue brief for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, CHIR experts examine the actions of six states that faced the prospect of bare counties for 2018. Continue reading

States Step Up to Protect Consumers in Wake of Cuts to ACA Cost-Sharing Reduction Payments

In the wake of President Trump’s decision to cut off payments for a key ACA subsidy for low-income enrollees, the impact felt by consumers and insurers will vary from state to state, depending on the actions of insurance regulators and insurance companies. In their latest post for The Commonwealth Fund’s To The Point blog, CHIR’s Sabrina Corlette, Kevin Lucia, and Maanasa Kona share findings from their 50-state review of insurers’ responses to the loss of cost-sharing reduction payments for 2018. Continue reading

It’s Not Time to Give Away Consumer Protections for Cost-Sharing Reduction Reimbursements

In the wake of a White House decision to end reimbursements to insurers for cost-sharing reduction (CSR) plans, a bipartisan agreement has emerged in Congress to restore them. However, negotiators are coming under pressure to make additional changes that would increase the number of uninsured and roll back protections for people with pre-existing conditions. CHIR’s Dania Palanker takes a look at what’s at stake and why it’s not worth compromising key Affordable Care Act protections in exchange for CSR payments. Continue reading

States Work to Preserve Affordable Care Act Progress amidst Federal Disorder

It’s been a bumpy year for state insurance and marketplace officials, thanks to considerable uncertainty over the future of the ACA. CHIR’s Emily Curran highlights recent action suggesting that some states may be poised to reassert their authority over their insurance markets, as they work to maintain the ACA’s coverage gains and keep their markets stable. Continue reading